She stumbles out into the dim-lit living room, Still wiping sleep unsuccessfully from her eyes
Not surprised, I look at her with love, my daughter.
And when push comes to shove, I’ll pause/shut off/put down/walk away from whatever I was doing
Because storms are brewing, and she’s heard the thunder. It’s no wonder she comes, a child in need of comfort.
And in the stillness of holding her, wiping tears, or squeezing away the fears or at least putting her back to sleep – I hear.
Soft whispers of powerful love, the sort of silent stillness that drew Elijah from the cave
I feel brave, because I’ve followed God. Not into places that are odd and confounding the wisdom of man,
I’ve simply done what I can, transformed into having the heart of a father.
Just to confirm, in the midst of a squirm I ask her, give a task to her, to answer out of her still-sleepy lips….”Why?”
“Because I had a dream that a raccoon was on my back.”
I smile, and lack any giant father-like response as I’m blown away by the simplicity and randomness in her answer.
The nightmares of children that grow like cancer, formless and unpredictable
and blown around by the slightest memory carried into bed.
And what she said more than words spoken was “Dad, with you I’m safe.”
And it’s a trust that chafes if I let the thought consume me and try to bumper every sharp edge
Constantly doing everything I can to drive a wedge between her and potential danger,
Because the risk of tears is no stranger to our world…and even though she’s my girl
And I’d do anything for her…there’s so much I can’t do. That’s T with a capital True.
That’s okay. Because I’m not modeling my parenting after Leman or Dobson or the next biggest thing.
But after the Lord who over us sings, He delights in His children and has always been
And will always be. But most importantly….for me…..as she sleeps on my knee…